August 12, 2008
(Let's call this) Phase 1 Complete; Commence Phase 2
The Dale Himes' family descended upon the Rogue Valley with compassionate determination. Their mission: to move Grandpa Doug to his new home at Avamere at Bethany to be nearer to the balance of his family, receive the benefits of regular participation in an active community, and receive close-at-hand medical attention as he would need it. Secondarily, they would move my remaining furniture to my new home in Ashland (yay!).
Mom, Dad, Brant and Jackie arrived late Thursday night. Seth and April would come the next day, sans cuties (said cuties would remain with April's parents in Sherwood). Friday, I worked, Mom and Dad organized a plan of attack and started sorting, Brant and Jackie and Tucker (The Puggle) went to Union Creek, and Grandpa pointed at stuff and answered questions (I imagine). That evening, they came down to Ashland to see my new place, toured the salon, and we went to dinner at Pasta Piatti. (No free refills on lemonade, should you need to know. I should have picked up on: "Let me get you a new glass.")
After a nice swim in the hotel pool that evening we were charged and ready for a long weekend of packing and hauling.
Saturday morning, the truck was picked up at Penske in Grants Pass (fine folks, they are), Mom, Dad, and Grandpa Doug went to a party at Eagle Point and saw some old friends. Jackie and April sorted and packed more crystal, china dishes and glassware than you would care to know; and Seth, Brant and I started moving my furniture out to the truck (and Tucker played on his rope staked to the middle of the front lawn.)
Brant, Seth and I ran into a bit of a snag getting my purple love seat and chair out of the hallway. It seems that I have quite the short memory when it comes to remembering snags of this sort. (We had the same problem getting them in, I now vaguely recall.) We had to remove the feet, but the problem was, upon close inspection, to unscrew them, we needed some kind of alien square screwdriver thing. Luckily for us, all of Grandpa's tools we strewn across various parts of the driveway and lawn in order for them to be sorted. Unluckily for us, none of those tools was the tool we required. Finally, Brant found exactly the tool for the job in one of the trailers, which is now in a zip lock bag along with the screws and to be possessed by me from now on. We successfully removed 7 out of 8 feet. (Which is a B+, but definitely not an A.) The last was stripped and I refused to let Seth take an axe to it. We shoved it through the hallway door jam (no damage that sandpaper and paint can't fix) and brought it in with ease into my own front door in Ashland (later that day).
My studio is now one part cute, two parts awesome.
On Sunday, the day of departure, the Dadoo made a final decision that one more half-hour of work was needed: spice cupboards, fridge, freezer, the back closet in the hall, and Grandpa's bedroom all needed a final tackle. Jackie and I tackled the freezer and underneath bags and bags of frozen who-knows-what was a zip lock bag containing a clipped stack of promissory notes (lots of people borrowed money from my grandparents and never paid them back) and two envelopes of cash. Gotta love those Depression-era folk and their money-saving values.
Finally, they departed for the long trip back. Seth went on to Sherwood to pick up the aforementioned cuties, the rest went on to Avamere to get Grandpa's place looking homey (and I'm told Jackie and April did a super job decorating and putting up pictures). They had dinner together and April, Brant and Jackie went on to Lacey to unload the stuff they received from Grandpa, and then finally Brant and Jackie made it back to Seattle and finished unloading the truck at half-past midnight.
What a day. While they traveled and unloaded, I made two trips to Goodwill and loaded up my car with stuff to take to my place. I spent my first night on Sunday and on Monday unpacked and worked and enjoyed watching a deer and two fawns all afternoon and evening.
Phase 1 is a wrap. Now on to the next phase: "In Which Amber is Surrounded by Deer in a Small Town."
August 04, 2008
The Craziest Story of the Year (at least in my book!)
The Upper Rogue River Gorge is one of the most wild and scenic stretches of the Rogue. The 500-foot stretch of water drops 45 feet and hides an unknown number of dangers including hidden lava tubes. I've been there dozens of times since it's right near Union Creek, our favorite place to camp. I've fished it and hiked it and I've heard the stories of people falling in and never coming out, but today I heard a true story of a 16-year-old who fell in and came out...alive!
He was taking some pictures and went above the gorge to the unfenced area to get more pictures. He waded in (OMG!!!), lost his balance and went in. Apparently lots of people saw him go in but no one saw him come out. At the bottom of the Gorge, there's great big pool that forms before the rapids continue. The water kicked him out along a ledge of that pool. People saw the body along the ledge "and then the body started moving." He had only scratches and bruises to show for wildest and craziest ride down the Rogue no one would ever want to take.
Just another deer...
I was headed out my back door when I startled a deer passing through. I slowly went back inside and retrieved my camera and took a few quick shots before it went on its way...